Downtown Events

Downtown and Over-the-Rhine Events

July 27-29, 2018

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Riverboats and Roots Walking Tour

Friday, July 27, 5:30 p.m.

Moerlein Lager House 115 Joe Nuxhall Way

Starting at the Moerlein Lager House, on this 60-minute tour you will learn the roots of Cincinnati’s grand brewing heritage from the first breweries on the riverfront to shipping beer worldwide from Public Landing. The tour then returns to modern day with a tour of the award-winning brewery in the Moerlein Lager House and ends with a complimentary beer. Tickets are $25 each.

The non-profit Brewery District CURC began giving the first walking tours of brewery sites in Cincinnati in 2006. In the years since, the Brewery District has been expanding its tour offerings and transforming heritage tourism in Cincinnati by building an unrivaled urban walking trail. With the opening of The Brewing Heritage Trail in 2018, the Brewery District CURC has revisited, improved and in some cases reinvented everything about its tours in order to offer Cincinnati's best tour experiences. While some guided tours take visitors on portions of the Brewing Heritage Trail with special access to locations that are not typically open to the public, other tours are completely independent of the Trail. Tours are available all year long.

Cincinnati Fashion Night

Friday, July 27, 6 – 9 p.m.

The Backstage Event Center, 625 Elm Street

Enjoy sips, light bites, swag bags, mingling, and shopping with a variety of local businesses and designers. Plus, enjoy an exciting fashion show series featuring the innovative collections of four emerging designers with Cincinnati roots. A portion of proceeds donated to Sew Valley. Featured fashion show designers include Brandon Bowers, Chelsea Cutrell, Madga Richard, and Paige Thinnes.

Ticket prices:

  • Front Row VIP ($30)
  • Second Row VIP ($20)
  • General Admission tickets ($10)


Friday, July 27 and Saturday, July 28, 6 p.m.

Festival513, Cincinnati’s premiere merchant festival, returns for its twelfth year to coincide with the Cincinnati Music Festival held at Paul Brown Stadium. Festival513 serves as a complementary event meeting the needs of the nearly 60,000 music festival patrons expected over the two-day weekend. This exciting event provides a centralized merchandise and food vending area for guests to the city and features nearly 100 merchandise and food booths. The festival is conveniently located on Freedom Way directly in front of Paul Brown Stadium, and is free and open to the public.


Cincy Soul 2018

Friday, July 27, 6 p.m. – 12 a.m.

Saturday, July 28, 11 a.m. – 12 a.m.

Sunday, July 29, 1 2p.m. – 10 p.m.

Fountain Square

Overlapping with the Cincinnati Music Festival, Cincy Soul 2018 celebrates the food offerings of local minority restaurant owners and chefs. Enjoy live music on Fountain Square featuring

Big Daddy Kane, Bilal, and Estelle.

Cincinnati Music Festival presented by P&G

Friday, July 27 and Saturday, July 28, gates at 6:30 p.m.; performances at 7:30 p.m.

Paul Brown Stadium  

The Cincinnati Music Festival Presented by P&G is held annually at the Paul Brown Stadium, home of the Cincinnati Bengals and has quickly become one of the country’s premier summer music events. Last year, CMF saw a total attendance of 91,200 over the three days, making it the largest urban music festival in the United States.

Friday, July 27: Charlie Wilson, Xscape, Boyz II Men, Fantasia, After 7

Saturday, July 28: Jill Scott, The Roots, Common, Keith Sweat, The O’Jays, Bootsy Collins

A 2018 study conducted by the UC Economics Center and commissioned by the Cincinnati USA Convention & Visitors Bureau shows the Cincinnati Music Festival presented by P&G provides a $107.5 million economic impact to the region, making it the largest annual driver of tourism in the tristate.

Ben Levin Trio Live at the Symphony Hotel

Friday, July 27, 8 – 11 p.m.

Symphony Hotel, 210 West 14th Street

Ben Levin is an 18-year-old blues/boogie woogie piano player and vocalist from Cincinnati. He is one of only a handful of “fourth generation” boogie woogie musicians in the US. Ben started playing professionally at age 11 with his father’s band, the Heaters, and since then has played over 200 gigs in a variety of configurations: with The Heaters, or with his own band, The Ben Levin Trio.

Cincinnati Ballet presents Moving Arts Cincinnati

Friday, July 27, 8 p.m.

Saturday, July 28, 2 and 8 p.m.

Aronoff Center for the Arts, 650 Walnut Street

Moving Arts is the newest creation of Cincinnati Ballet principal dancer Cervilio Amador and former Cincinnati Ballet principal dancer and current Executive Director of the Sacramento Ballet Anthony Krutzkamp. This is a premiere opportunity to see contemporary dance by both world renowned and up and coming choreographers, while being engulfed in visual art displays, and musical performances.

Cervilio and Anthony are thrilled to bring this amazing event to a city they both love. The performances will be the first look into the interactive experience Moving Arts will become.

As Co-Artistic Directors, Cervilio Amador, Anthony Krutzkamp, and Logan Pachciarz, strive to bring the arts together for an affair like no other. This will not only be a world-class performance showcasing our dancers and choreographers, but also a place for other local artists to share their works. It is our vision to stimulate all your senses with this unique collaboration.

In addition to enhancing the dance and arts scene in Cincinnati, the Moving Arts annual dance festival would like to give back to the Cincinnati community by allowing the participating choreographers and dancers to provide master classes at local schools. We hope to share our knowledge with the next generation of artists, securing the city of Cincinnati as an arts powerhouse.

Along with performances, the organizers will provide the opportunity for our artists to assist in educational outreach to Cincinnati schools. This includes, but is not limited to: master classes, lecturing, and mentoring. They hope to create an inspiring environment for the community, audience, and artists.

Cincinnati Neighborhood Games Finals

Saturday, July 28, 9 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Yeatman’s Cove, 705 E. Pete Rose Way

The Cincinnati Neighborhood Games brings all 52 Cincinnati neighborhoods together for fun and camaraderie.  It also gives residents and community organizations, which do not typically interact with one another, the ability to collaborate via knowledge sharing, education, enrichment and physical activity.

Each neighborhood will hold a qualifying round in each event in which the neighborhood chooses to participate.  There are 16 events in total – all with little barrier to entry, including the 40 yard dash, hula-hoop endurance, chess, and more. This event will have everything from community engagement and team building to neighborhood bragging rights and will be topped off with medal ceremonies.

Events included 3-Legged Race, Basketball – HORSE, Cornhole, Stein Holding, Supersize Jenga, Tug of War, Water Balloon Toss, and Wiffle Ball HR Derby.

Qualifying rounds were held in individual neighborhoods, which send their qualifiers to Downtown/OTR for friendly competition at the Cincinnati Neighborhood Games. The Parade of Neighborhoods features participants from each neighborhood following their neighborhood flag for the opening and closing ceremonies.

Adult Downhill Big Wheel Racing

Saturday, July 28, noon – 11 p.m.

Nation Kitchen & Bar, 1200 Broadway

On a certain summer’s night, family and friends gather as the tranquil neighborhood of Pendleton transforms into two blocks of asphalt, speed and downhill competition! THIS IS DANGERWHEEL!

This fourth annual tournament of bravery and outdoor jollification is composed of two key elements:


1) A wide selection of summer swill by local breweries and bars.

2) The first of its kind, adult big-wheel racing tournament.

Danger Wheel is produced by a group of neighbors who love to have fun in their backyard of Pendleton. All the proceeds from the event benefit the beautification projects in Pendleton Neighborhood.



I want to race. Do I have to provide my own big wheel?

Nope. We provide them for you. And we even have mechanics on hand for when you undoubtedly crash and burn.

What happens if your big wheel breaks during a race but you win? Can you get a replacement?

Yes. If you win and your big-wheel breaks, one additional big-wheel will be provided for you. If you break the second one, you are disqualified.

Can you win by carrying the big wheel across the finish line after it breaks?

No. You must be seated to win your race.

Can we wear costumes?

Absolutely! This is America after all isn’t it?

Will there be a losers bracket?

Yes. Each race team will get a minimum of 2 races.


If I win, does this qualify me for the X-Games?

No. As mentioned before, this is all for fun. Let's make sure we maintain that spirit in competition.

Family Festival: UnMuseum Block Party

Saturday, July 28 12 – 3 p.m.

Contemporary Arts Center, 44 East Sixth Street

Stop by the CAC for a FREE indoor block party inspired by the UnMuseum’s interactive artwork! You will be making iridescent kaleidoscopes inspired by Deep Space, designing inflatable fascinators in honor of Collective Breath, creating chalk murals on our faux sidewalk and snacking on some candy hot dogs.

The artists of Deep Space, Amy Lynch, Joel Masters and J.D. Loughead, formed a collaborative design group called Lucius LTD. Lynch and Masters met in middle school, while Loughead was introduced to the group during college. What unites the three is an interest in experimental design. Together, they have created nontraditional structures, like a traveling geodesic dome, that has been used as a 3D dance floor and they have also created a mediation room built inside a box truck.

Don’t miss special guests, Paradox Teatro, a collaboration between artists’ home countries of United States and Mexico, connecting people across boarders and language. Join them in a dreamy short performance with shadow puppetry, music and projections.

W&S Open Cincinnati: Urban Pong Table Tennis Tournament

Saturday, July 28, 1 – 6 p.m.

Washington Park, 1230 Elm Street

Urban Pong presented by Skyline Chili welcomes 64 table tennis top-competitors who will battle for timeless ping-pong glory and a prize package including a pair of tickets to the W&S Open Finals Match as well as a miniature replica of the coveted Rookwood Cup trophy. It all goes down when Urban Pong serves up a quest for victory at Washington Park.

This event will include crowd giveaways, food, cold beer, live music, a mobile tennis court and practice tables for the family and friends to join in the festivities.

Reds vs Phillies, with Post-Game Concert Series featuring Walk The Moon

Saturday July 28, 6:40 p.m.

Great American Ballpark, 100 Joe Nuxhall Way

As part of Super Saturdays, the first 20,000 fans will receive a free exclusive figure of the All-Star first baseman Joey Votto, including limited edition gold versions randomly distributed to 500 lucky fans.

As part of the Ohio Lottery Post-Game Concert Series, Cincinnati's own WALK THE MOON will be performing a LIVE concert from the field on Saturday, July 28! The concert will begin approximately 20 minutes after the game ends.

Everyone with a ticket to the Reds game will have the chance to enjoy the show from the hometown favorite band!

Hailing from Cincinnati, WALK THE MOON consists of Nicholas Petricca (singer/keyboardist), Kevin Ray (bassist), Eli Maiman (guitarist), and Sean Waugaman (drummer). The band's latest single “One Foot” off of their recent album What If Nothing, hit Number 1 at Alternative Radio. In 2015, the band catapulted to stardom when their hit single “Shut Up and Dance”, which is included on their RIAA Certified Gold album TALKING IS HARD, became a multi-platinum global smash that also peaked at No. 1 on the Alternative, Hot AC, AC charts, No. 4 on the Billboard Hot 100, and went to No. 2 at Top 40 radio.

Bridalrama Showcase

Sunday, July 29, 11 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Duke Energy Convention Center, 525 Elm Street

Bridalrama Showcase is a wedding show that gives brides the rare opportunity to meet face-to-face with professional wedding specialists to make their wedding dreams come true. Tickets are $10 and get you face-to-face access with a variety of wedding vendors.

Vendor types include

  • Beauty and Hair
  • Bridal Registries
  • Cakes, desserts, candy, and chocolates
  • Florists
  • Hotels and lodging
  • Photographers
  • Wedding and event planners

Brunch at Know

Sunday, July 29, 1:30 – 3 p.m.

Know Theater of Cincinnati, 1120 Jackson Street

Join the Know Theatre for the first brunch of the season – provided, as always, by Water Tower Champagne, Fine Wines and Tasting Room! Chef Jan Lazarus creates a uniquely delicious, seasonally inspired spread for our pre-show brunch buffet. You can enjoy brunch for just $35 with your 3 p.m. matinee ticket to Whisper House.

Whisper House 10 words or less: A pop musical ghost story.

Running Time: 100 minutes, including one 15 minute intermission

Rated: PG.

With music and lyrics by Duncan Sheik, the Tony-winning composer of Spring Awakening, this daring new pop rock musical unfolds in 1942, in and around a remote lighthouse on the coast of Maine. The Know is thrilled to present the third-ever full production of this new musical, and the first U.S. production of the current version of the show.

To book your spot, select the July 29 performance date, then select the ticket labeled “Brunch Plus Show.”

Gallery Experience: Make Way for Ducklings: The Art of Robert McCloskey

Sunday, July 29, 3 – 4 p.m.

Cincinnati Art Museum, 953 Eden Park Dr.

Explore the children’s book illustrations of Robert McCloskey as Director of Learning and Interpretation Emily Holtrop leads guests through the exhibition Make Way for Ducklings: The Art of Robert McCloskey. This is a free event.

Make Way for Ducklings: The Art of Robert McCloskey celebrates the writer and illustrator whose classic children’s books have captivated children of all ages for generations. The recipient of two Caldecott Medals and three Caldecott Honors, McCloskey was a major force in twentieth century children’s literature.

Organized by The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art in Amherst, Massachusetts, Make Way for Ducklings consists of over 100 original artworks, ephemera and rare preliminary book materials. While emphasis centers on the classic picture book Make Way for Ducklings (1941), the exhibition considers McCloskey’s entire body of work.

The exhibition consists of over 100 original artworks, ephemera, and rare preliminary book materials. While emphasis centers on his classic, Make Way for Ducklings (1941) the exhibition considers McCloskey’s entire works including Centerburg Tales (1951), which recall his youth in Hamilton, Ohio. In addition, it includes his family-based stories in his adopted home state of Maine such as Blueberries for Sal (1948) and Time of Wonder (1957).

Also on view will be McCloskey’s illustrations for books by other authors, including Journey Cake, Ho! (1953) and Henry Reed, Inc. (1958). The exhibition culminates with a selection of independent work—watercolors and paintings—that connect McCloskey to such prominent twentieth-century American painters as Thomas Hart Benton and Edward Hopper.

The Book of Mormon

Opens Tuesday, July 31

Aronoff Center for the Arts, 650 Walnut Street

The New York Times calls it “‘the best musical of the century.” The Washington Post says, “It is the kind of evening that restores your faith in musicals.” And Entertainment Weekly says, “Grade A: the funniest musical of all time.” It’s The Book of Mormon, the nine-time, Tony Award®-winning Best Musical.

Back by popular demand, The Book of Mormon, which played a record breaking run in 2016 returns to Cincinnati for a limited engagement July 31 – August 5.

This outrageous musical comedy follows the misadventures of a mismatched pair of missionaries, sent halfway across the world to spread the Good Word. Now with standing room only productions in London, on Broadway, and across North America, Book of Mormon has truly become an international sensation.

The Book of Mormon features book, music and lyrics by Trey Parker, Robert Lopez and Matt Stone. Parker and Stone are the four-time Emmy Award-winning creators of the landmark animated series, “South Park.” Tony Award-winner Lopez is co-creator of the long-running hit musical comedy, Avenue Q. The musical is choreographed by Tony Award-winner Casey Nicholaw (Monty Python’s Spamalot, The Drowsy Chaperone) and is directed by Nicholaw and Parker.

Brian Thomas

Brian Thomas

Based in Cincinnati, OH, the Brian Thomas Morning Show covers news and politics, both local and national, from a conservative point of view. Read more


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